USA Drawn With Italy Ghana and Czech Republic in Group E for 2006 World Cup

LEIPZIG Germany (From USSoccerPlayers.com & FIFAWorldCup.com reports) - The United States National Team discovered their fate on Friday as FIFA conducted the draw for the 2006 World Cup.

The US will open against the Czech Republic with Italy in Game Two and Ghana for their final Group E game. These are two of the three teams the US faced in Italia '90.

US World Cup veteran Cobi Jones represented CONCACAF in the proceedings.

As a ranked team Mexico got a favorable group seeding opening against Iran and facing Angola and Portugal in Group D.

The draw produced some mouthwatering match-ups not least in Group C where African newcomers Côte d'Ivoire will play two-time winners Argentina Serbia & Montenegro and the Netherlands in the toughest-looking section.

Holders Brazil are in Group F with Croatia Australia and Japan meaning former Brazilian hero Zico must prepare his Japanese team to face the team he represented at three previous FIFA World Cups.

Hosts Germany will take on Poland Ecuador and Costa Rica in Group A and the Germans' meeting with Costa Rica in Munich will open the tournament on 9 June next year.

Elsewhere the 1998 winners France will kick off their campaign against neighbours Switzerland England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson will face his home country Sweden for the second FIFA World Cup running and Lusitanian countries Portugal and Angola another of their first-timers will meet.

Group A
Germany
Costa Rica
Poland
Ecuador

Group B
England
Paraguay
Trinidad and Tobago
Sweden

Group C
Argentina
Côte d'Ivoire
Serbia and Montenegro
Netherlands

Group D
Mexico
Iran
Angola
Portugal

Group E
Italy
Ghana
United States of America
Czech Republic

Group F
Brazil
Croatia
Australia
Japan

Group G
France
Switzerland
Korea Republic
Togo

Group H
Spain
Ukraine
Tunisia
Saudi Arabia